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Moebius Scarf - The Original

by Linda

How many ways are there to spell this? :)

[Moebius in Basketweave by Lila Guterman]

This pattern was inspired by similar patterns on the web as well as a life long love of math and science. I've always loved asking people to show me the right side and wrong side of a Moebius strip. ;)

The first time I made this scarf, I kept shaking my head telling myself that I must be doing something wrong, there's no way this was going to work. But I was wrong!

NOTE: To lessen confusion, even though it's a circular needle, the terms used to describe its two ends will be as if it was two separate needles.

  1. Cast On: Cast on 150 stitches, loosely.
  2. Round 1: Ensuring stitches are not twisted, pick up and knit a stitch below the first cast on stich, along the lower edge of the cast on row. In other words, knit in the thread below the first cast on stitch while leaving the first cast on stitch on its needle. Your cast on row should now be "closed" into a complete circle with your newly picked up stitch on your "working" needle (closest to your body), in front of the other needle which still holds the first cast on stitch. Clear as mud? ;)
  3. Round 1 (cont'd): Continue around in the same fashion, picking up one stitch below each of the original cast on stitches, while leaving those cast on stitches on their needle. Your circular needle will begin to take on the shape it probably had when brand new and still sitting in its package, as it begins to coil up within itself during this round. When you've knitted up one stitch below each stitch of the cast on row, you're finished Round 1.
  4. To help understand the path your knitting will take, if you trace a circle twice with your finger, and imagine your beginning and ending points joined (Round 2), you've got the idea of how this will look as it's progressing. Like two rounds of a coil, but with the ends joined together. One coil will be inside the other as you knit around. It will take some manipulation of the fabric to continue to knit comfortably at this early stage, but it gets easier as you go along. [image of scarf]
  5. Round 2: Place a small marker on your right needle at this point. Again, triple check to ensure your work is not twisted. Bring the end of your right needle up to meet the left needle. Knit the first stitch the normal way and remove it from the other needle as usual. This joining is the action that adds the half twist, identifying this scarf as a Moebius strip. Continue knitting around as usual until you've reached your marker. You'll have knitted into each stitch of the original 150 you cast on, as well as into the 150 you knitted up from below those cast on stitches - 300 stitches in total on the needle.
  6. Round 3: Slip marker, Purl around.
  7. Round 4: Slip marker, Knit around.
  8. Continue with Rounds 3 and 4 to produce Garter Stitch.
  9. Remember it's supposed to look like you've done something wrong. As the work progresses, it should make a little more sense. Don't rip it out if it looks funny!
  10. Continue working for about 25 rounds (50 rows counted across the width of the scarf - each round goes around the length of the scarf twice). Cast off in knit or purl (whichever the next round is supposed to be), then darn in ends as neatly as you can since this scarf is, essentially, reversible.
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